Melbourne Cup the aim as Alounak joins Andrew Balding for King Power Racing

Alounak, a close fifth in the Breeders' Cup Turf for Germany last month, is set to be targeted at the Melbourne Cup and Hong Kong Vase after being bought privately by King Power Racing and transferred to Andrew Balding.

The four-year-old colt, formerly owned by Darius Racing, was originally trained by Jean-Pierre Carvalho and was a dual Listed winner at Dusseldorf at two and three and ran second to Study Of Man in the Prix Greffulhe.

Switched to Waldemar Hickst this year, he won a Group 3 contest over ten furlongs at Baden-Baden before finding only Desert Encounter too good in the Canadian International and running fifth in the Breeders' Cup Turf, finishing only two and a half lengths behind the winner Bricks And Mortar.

King Power Racing manager Alastair Donald said: “His run at Santa Anita was pretty eyecatching and he performed very well in Canada too, so he certainly seems to be a progressive performer.

“We saw him as a good horse to purchase with races like the Melbourne Cup and Hong Kong Vase next season in mind. He handles fast ground but he's decent on soft ground too, so we could have quite a bit of fun with him travelling around the world.”

Alounak is by Camelot out of an unraced Rail Link three-parts sister to Matron Stakes winner Emulous and Prix Gontaut-Biron scorer First Sitting, and Donald said the pedigree suggests the colt might appreciate a step up in trip.

“We'll be looking at running him over longer; looking at how he's bred, it could bring out further improvement,” he said. “He's also the sort of horse who could progress with age, so there are a lot of options on the international stage.”

King Power Racing enjoyed a banner year in 2019 with its colourbearers Bangkok, Beat The Bank, Fox Champion, Morando, Mystery Power and Shine So Bright winning Pattern contests and Donjuan Triumphant becoming the owners' debut Group 1 scorer.

Flemington the aim for Alounak, picture ThoroughbredNEWS